Construction Physics

Construction Physics delves into the evolution and impact of construction technologies and methodologies, from historical breakthroughs to modern challenges. It explores the significance of infrastructure and development processes, the regulatory landscape, and proposes forward-thinking solutions to pressing issues such as energy strategy and environmental concerns.

Construction Technology and History Infrastructure Development Energy Production and Policy Environmental Impact and Regulation Productivity and Efficiency in Construction Public Health and Building Standards

The hottest Substack posts of Construction Physics

And their main takeaways
22131 implied HN points 04 Mar 24
  1. Airports are crucial for global economy, with aviation contributing significantly to GDP.
  2. Building airports is notoriously difficult due to opposition from various interest groups, particularly related to noise concerns.
  3. Despite challenges in airport construction, the aviation industry has managed to adapt and accommodate increased air travel by adding runways, expanding infrastructure, and increasing passenger capacity per plane.
21087 implied HN points 19 Feb 24
  1. The author's writing process involves mainly two types of posts: explanation-driven and exploratory. They often write to understand complex topics themselves and then share their findings.
  2. Extensive research is a crucial part of the author's writing process. They gather information from a variety of sources like books, dissertations, and online resources.
  3. The author follows a structured approach starting from research, reading, and thinking, then moves on to compressing and structuring content, before finally drafting, editing, and posting their work.
13153 implied HN points 13 Mar 24
  1. Mass timber construction is advantageous for tall buildings due to its fire resistance and carbon sequestration, but it may not significantly increase housing construction volume in the US compared to traditional methods.
  2. While mass timber is praised for its safety and environmental benefits, it faces challenges such as higher initial costs and more complex processing steps, making it less competitive than light-framed wood construction in the US.
  3. Canada's experience with mass timber, despite a supportive ecosystem, shows that residential mass timber construction may not see a significant uptick in the US housing market even with continued growth and cost reduction.
27768 implied HN points 31 Jan 24
  1. Developing a new commercial aircraft is incredibly expensive, with development costs exceeding billions and posing significant financial risks to companies.
  2. Aircraft manufacturers face challenges in predicting market demand and trends, with incorrect guesses leading to financial losses and potentially fatal setbacks.
  3. Given the high costs and risks involved in developing new aircraft, manufacturers often opt to revise existing models to mitigate costs, keep pilot training minimal, and maximize efficiency.
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18999 implied HN points 10 Jan 24
  1. Industrial robots have become more cost-effective over time, making them more accessible for various applications.
  2. Advances in industrial robots have led to significant improvements in precision and smooth, continuous motion capabilities.
  3. There has been a trend towards standard robotic architectures, with modern robots primarily consisting of robotic arms with electric drives and servo motors.
26933 implied HN points 07 Jul 23
  1. Titanium is abundant in the earth's crust but took time to be utilized due to its bonding properties.
  2. The development of titanium as an industrial material was heavily supported by government research and funding.
  3. The story of titanium showcases the importance of serendipity in scientific discoveries and the critical role of manufacturing in technology advancement.
19834 implied HN points 25 May 23
  1. Electricity transitioned from a rare luxury to a critical aspect of modern life in a short period of time.
  2. The development of high-voltage transmission lines allowed for long-distance power transmission and the creation of interconnected power systems.
  3. The electric power industry grew by embracing scale, cooperation, and regulation to meet increasing demand and ensure reliability.
12735 implied HN points 11 Jul 23
  1. In the early 20th century, mail-order homes became popular due to factors like railroad expansion and availability of goods in catalogs.
  2. Mail-order homes were not only limited to houses; they also included gas stations and barns.
  3. The fall of mail-order homes was attributed to competition from other building methods and advancements in construction technology.
11274 implied HN points 03 Jun 23
  1. In the 1930s, federal projects like the Hoover Dam increased electrification and capacity, but growth slowed due to the Great Depression.
  2. Post-World War II saw the Golden Age of the electric power industry with massive growth in electricity generation, consumption, and industry assets.
  3. The end of the Golden Age came in the late 1960s due to factors like environmental concerns, technical challenges, and the 1973 energy crisis, leading to rising costs and stagnation.
9812 implied HN points 17 Jun 23
  1. Electric power in the US was historically monopolized by utility companies, but cracks in the system started to appear in the 1960s and 1970s.
  2. The Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 revolutionized the energy industry by creating a new class of independent power producers called Qualifying Facilities, leading to an increase in non-utility electricity generation.
  3. Deregulation of the electric power industry began in the 1990s and 2000s, with the unbundling of generation and transmission services, creation of new power suppliers like Exempt Wholesale Generators, and the establishment of Independent System Operators and Regional Transmission Organizations to introduce competition.
10021 implied HN points 18 Feb 23
  1. Construction industry productivity issues may be due to organized special interests influencing the process with complex regulations and stakeholder approvals.
  2. Regulations have increased costs in construction through additional input requirements and negotiation delays.
  3. Increased regulation in the construction industry might not be causing productivity stagnation more than in other sectors, but it is a significant factor to consider.
6681 implied HN points 08 May 23
  1. Healthy Buildings book focuses on how indoor environments impact health and productivity.
  2. Improving ventilation and air quality indoors can lead to better cognitive performance and reduce the spread of airborne pathogens.
  3. Creating standards for healthier buildings may require government incentives rather than relying solely on voluntary certifications.
208 implied HN points 31 Jan 24
  1. The aircraft industry has many enthusiasts interested in commercial aircraft aspects for fun.
  2. This post is for paid subscribers only.
  3. There are extremely accurate flight and air traffic control simulators available.
213 HN points 25 Apr 23
  1. Yellowstone National Park sits on top of a supervolcano that could have catastrophic eruptions
  2. Using a giant geothermal power plant to bleed off heat from the magma chambers could prevent Yellowstone from erupting and generate electricity
  3. Developing such technology could provide benefits beyond just Yellowstone and address a major risk to civilization
0 implied HN points 19 Jan 24
  1. The machine tool industry has been extensively studied.
  2. Many sources discuss the industry's decline in the 1980s.
  3. Less information is available on the industry's evolution since then.
0 implied HN points 03 Mar 24
  1. The post lists helpful sources for learning about airports and their construction.
  2. The sources are listed in order of usefulness, with some marked as 'Recommended to Read' for actually interesting reading.
  3. Readers can subscribe to access more content from the author.